A Call to Personal Responsibility... From A Democrat
|It is taken as an article of faith among Democrats, Independents, and some Republicans that Ronald Reagan could not win the GOP nomination these days.|
People point to his willingness to raise taxes, grant amnesty to illegal immigrants, and dare I say it, compromise with the Dems on a host of issues to get things done.
I would agree. I see no way any serious Republican candidate could reasonably expect to win the necessary primaries with a record such as the one Reagan held both as Governor of California and as President.
But lest the Democrats get smug, let's turn the tables a little.
Last night I watched an excellent special from ABC News. It was about the here to fore unheard tapes of Former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, wife of President John Kennedy.
Diane Sawyer did an excellent job of taking us back to that time and giving real insight into the couple and their family. Full disclosure time... while I was a young kid back then, I have always held the Kennedy's in high regard. While flawed, few American families have a record of public service that can match that of the Kennedy's.
That being said, here is what got my attention. During a segment on the inauguration, we once again heard the line for which perhaps JFK is most famous... "Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country."
That one line, at the end of this great speech is a clarion call to personal responsibility. Certainly President Kennedy did not believe, as the current crop of GOP contenders does, that government has no place in the lives of Americans. But this President, even though he was a strong advocate of Keynesian economics, and a fighter for universal health care, also believed government should not be your first option.
I do not believe a Democrat would be elected, or supported by a majority of voters in his or her party with a view of personal responsibility like that of John Kennedy.
Our system has changed and if the Dems demand that the GOP recognize how far they have shifted from the ideals of Ronald Reagan, it is only fair that the Dems also realize how far they have shifted from the ideals of JFK.
Are we better for it? Time will tell.